An Update on Georgia Tech Savannah
April 8, 2011
When Provost Rafael Bras joined Georgia Tech in the fall, one of the first assignments I asked of him was to perform a thorough assessment of our education and research operations in Savannah. For the past four months, he has chaired a task force of faculty dedicated to identifying a sustainable and viable strategy for Georgia Tech Savannah.
Last week, Provost Bras sent a message to the students, staff and faculty in Savannah in which he indicated, among other things, the strong expectation that Georgia Tech would phase out its undergraduate education programs in the coastal region. Understandably, it has generated some uncertainty among our colleagues in Savannah, as well as some questions among those based in Atlanta.
The task force will provide me with its final report and recommendations on June 1, and early indications suggest Georgia Tech Savannah as a reconfigured organization providing the types of educational and experiential learning opportunities that serve local educational, government and industry needs.
Any course of action will require a gradual transition that will take time to complete. Whether providing every current and admitted student in the program the attention necessary to obtain a Georgia Tech degree, or supporting the dedicated professionals working on behalf of Georgia Tech, we are mindful of the impact these decisions will have on the people within the Georgia Tech community. Any change in operations has repercussions, requiring our thoughtfulness in terms of planning, sensitivity and support.
I want to assure you that Georgia Tech will remain deeply invested in Savannah and the coastal community. Because of the work done by Provost Bras and the task force, we continue to believe there is mutual benefit in having a continued presence in the region. In addition, we believe there are other collaborative opportunities that serve the educational, research and economic development needs for the area. The result of this effort will be a sharpened commitment as a partner and a resource for the people of Southeast Georgia.
I would like to thank Dr. Bras and members of the task force for the careful and thorough work they are doing as they help us determine the best course forward for Georgia Tech and the communities we serve.